Buddhist leader presents giant-sized painting to Vietnam
Buddhist leader and head of the Drukpa Lineage, the 12th Gyalwang Drukpa, on Thursday presented to the people of Vietnam one of world's largest religious paintings that was unveiled at the opening of the second India Buddhism Culture Day there, a statement said.
The painting, which is 12 metre wide and 16 metre long, is of Lord Avalokiteshvara, an official statement by the Gyalwang Drukpa office here said.
Nearly 100 Buddhist monks and nuns from India participated in the ceremonies that had over 70,000 people attending from all over Vietnam and across the world.
The four-day event -- organised jointly by the Vietnam-India Friendship Association, the Vietnam Buddhist Sangha and the India Embassy in Vietnam -- aims to celebrate 45 years of diplomatic ties and 10 years of comprehensive strategic partnership between the two countries.
Unveiled at Thien An Pagoda in Tam Dao district, the northern province of Vinh Phuc, the silk-embroidered brocade painting depicts the thousand-armed Avalokiteshvara in the middle, with Manjushri at the bottom right and Vajrapani at bottom left.
Other Buddha deities from the Vajrayana and Mahayana traditions are also portrayed in the painting that is also known as a Thongdrol in the Himalayas. It is made from brocades and top quality silk threads and weighs over 100 kg.
It was crafted by over 40 artisans, who worked on it for close to six months for the event in Vietnam.
Tran Chien Thang, Vice Chairman of the Vietnam Record Association, acknowledged the painting as "the largest and heaviest Buddhist painting in existence".
The Drukpa Lineage is an integral part of Himalayan and Central Asian legacy and culture.
Dating back to the Indian scholar-saint Naropa, the Drukpa Lineage is woven into the history of Buddhism and the geographic locales of India and Central Asia.
The spiritual head of the 1,000-year-old Drukpa Order based in the Himalayas is also heading the 17th century famed Hemis monastery of Drukpa Lineage in Ladakh, the largest such in the Himalayas.